Marketing Tips: Target your audience, don't get wooed by market sensations
October 28, 2011
Branding is an important part of any marketing campaign, but it's methodology is entirely different from an organization's overall promotional strategy. Whereas branding is about plastering your company name wherever possible, marketing campaigns should be targeted - otherwise you're wasting capital.
Face it: Whatever your business is, no matter how sensational and explosive it is, you can't capture the sale of every consumer. In fact, there will always be a wide swath of shoppers or clients who will not go for your products and services. Accordingly, your marketing strategy should address the needs and concerns of the customers you can expect to attract.
"Companies paint themselves into a corner because of a misplaced fear that by targeting one group they’ll be turning away others," writes Steve McKee for Bloomberg Businessweek. "But aiming at everyone is an oxymoron; the best marketers understand that by narrowing their target audience they can increase the intensity of their brand's appeal, piquing interest and driving margins."
"You're better off being the first choice of 10 percent of the population than being one of 10 options for everyone," McKee adds.
Of course, how you target your ideal market segment is an entirely different matter. There are a variety of channels, strategies, methods and services at your disposal - whether you plan to bootstrap or outsource your marketing. Regardless of your plans, McKee advises against becoming "seduced by the new."
The digitization of nearly everything has generated a plethora of new marketing channels - each with its own strategy and host of applicable minutiae. Social media is the perfect example, as it represents a highly sensationalized platform through which organizations have the power to deliver a complex message to virtually millions of people. However, its marketing significance may be aggrandized.
That's not to say social marketing is not worth your time - it is. But it's not worth upending your entire strategy and devoting untold capital and resources toward a channel that is still in its infancy and still working out the nuts and bolts.
"It's easy to be seduced by the siren songs of new tactics, but wisdom says to stick to what works while you evaluate what might," McKee points out. "Some company has to be first to give something a shot, but it should rarely (if ever) be yours."